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FDA NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: January 4, 2010

Update: On May 25, 2010, the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, Judge Jose L. Linares entered a consent decree of permanent injunction in this case. The order prohibits Quesos Mi Pueblito and its President Felix Sanchez from manufacturing and distributing the firm’s products unless and until they have taken certain actions to correct the insanitary conditions and control the pathogenic bacterium Listeria monocytogenes (L. mono.) at their facility. The firm may not resume operations until it receives permission from the FDA. The United States sought to voluntarily dismiss Jesus Galvez from the case, and the court ordered his dismissal on March 12, 2010.

Media Inquiries: Siobhan DeLancey, 301-796-4668, siobhan.delancey@fda.hhs.gov
Consumer Inquiries: 888-INFO-FDA

FDA Takes Action Against New Jersey Cheese Manufacturer
Company failed to correct violations despite federal, state warnings

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today announced intentions to ask a federal court to shut down a New Jersey cheese manufacturer with an alleged history of operating under insanitary conditions and producing cheese contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.

The U.S. Department of Justice filed a complaint for permanent injunction against Quesos Mi Pueblito and two of its officers, Felix Sanchez and Jesus Galvez.  The complaint alleges that recent inspections by the FDA and the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services found Listeria-contaminated cheese and insanitary conditions at the Passaic company.

If entered by the court, the injunction would stop the company and its officers from manufacturing and distributing food until they can bring their operations into full compliance with FDA food safety regulations and produce cheese that does not test positive for the presence of Listeria. The complaint for permanent injunction was filed in the U.S. District Court - District of New Jersey.

"FDA’s work with federal and state partners to root out or remedy food manufacturers not compliant with food safety laws ensures safer foods get to our dinner tables," said Michael Chappell, the FDA’s acting associate commissioner for regulatory affairs.

Quesos Mi Pueblito currently manufactures and distributes a variety of soft, semi-soft, and hard Mexican cheeses in grocery stores and supermarkets in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, Florida, Virginia and the District of Columbia. Among Quesos Mi Pueblito’s products are queso oaxaca, queso fresco, queso requeson and queso cotija molido.

Consumers can report problems with FDA-regulated products to their district office consumer complaint coordinator.
 

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